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Posts Tagged ‘complacency’

Last week I was working in Tacoma, Washington.  The weather was dry and mostly sunny.  Consequently Mount Rainier was visible all week long.  Even though the mountain is more than 70 miles away it dominates the view.  At 14,411 feet, Mount Rainier is the tallest mountain in Washington and the fourth highest peak in the lower 48 states.

In the early morning the sun hitting the snow and glacier covered slopes produced a beautiful golden glow some 30 minutes or so before the actual sunrise in Tacoma.

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About 15 minutes before sunrise in Tacoma the sun has been glowing off Mount Rainier for at least 15 minutes.

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This shot makes me think of the “purple mountain’s majesty” from America the Beautiful.

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Even from almost sea level with buildings, trees, and man-made structure galore, Mount Rainier is still visible above the distractions.

 

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Another shot across the Tacoma marina.

Across the harbor from a different perspective, a city park across from the Old Tacoma City Hall.

Across the harbor from a different perspective, a city park across from the Old Tacoma City Hall.

I liked how the mountain was framed by the draw bridge in this shot taken from the Park across from the Old City Hall.

I liked how the mountain was framed by the draw bridge in this shot taken from the Park across from the Old City Hall.

Throughout the day the mountain stood majestic in the background.  At mid-day angle of the light hitting the mountain from the backside tended to mute the visible color if not the mountains stature.

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An early afternoon picture from the window in our training room.

In the afternoon and evening with the light striking the mountain from the west, the ice and snow fairly glittered with bright white brilliance.

Later in the afternoon with the sun in a more favorable position.

Later in the afternoon with the sun in a more favorable position.

I can't help but get a selfie with the Majestic Mountain.

I can’t help but get a selfie with the Majestic Mountain.

View from the Cliff House Restaurant across Commencement Bay from Tacoma.

View from the Cliff House Restaurant across Commencement Bay from Tacoma.

Even with a dreadful lack of snow this past season (I was told they got about 15% of normal) the top of the mountain is still blanketed in white.

Even with a dreadful lack of snow this past season (I was told they got about 15% of normal) the top of the mountain is still blanketed in white.

Finally as the sun set and the surrounding city and hills faded to grey, the last rays of light lit the mountain with soft pinks and shades or purple.

Even the hill between the mountain and my hotel can't hide the beautiful sunset on the mountain.

Even the hill between the mountain and my hotel can’t hide the beautiful sunset on the mountain.

View from my hotel room just after 9:00 pm.  The sun has set in the city, but the mountain glowed for another 10 - 15 minutes, gently fading into the night.

View from my hotel room just after 9:00 pm. The sun has set in the city, but the mountain glowed for another 10 – 15 minutes, gently fading into the night.

Whenever I was in a position to find the mountain, I would glance that way and be inspired.  I have no desire to summit the peak, but I will travel to the mountain the first chance I get to visit and get a much closer view.  I am drawn to it.  From one of the windows where we were meeting the mountain was framed in the distance.  When we took a break I would slip up to the window to take a glance.  It seems funny, but seeing the mountain in the distance gave me a sense of awe and wonder that just felt good.

Taking time to sense God’s presence is like sneaking a peak at that mountain.  In fact there are a number of parallels between that can be made between the awe inspiring views I observe and seeking God.

Like that mountain God is majestic.  He is the Lord God, Creator of heaven and earth.  He is the Ruler over all the earth.  All power, dominion and honor is due to Him.

The mountain did not move while I was there, but the view of the mountain was constantly changing in subtle ways.  In Hebrews 13:8 we read that Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.  God does not change.  However our knowledge and relationship with God undergoes a metamorphosis as we seek Him and follow His leading.

While I was blessed with sunny weather and clear views for five days, the locals told me that the mountain is usually shrouded in clouds.  One person even said that the mountain makes it’s own weather with sunny and clear often transformed to clouds and fog around the mountain.  Likewise, God is sometimes hidden from our view.  It is by faith that we “see” the Lord.  As I have shared in a number of stories in my blog, God is actively engaged in our lives and His intervention is often visible.  But there are also times when things happen that can cause us to wonder where God is.  The killing of nine people in a bible study in Charleston, SC a few days ago is one of those times.  Yet even when the clouds roll in and obliterate the view or when bad things happen to good people, it does not change the fact that the mountain and God are still there and they are not diminished.

Another similarity that struck me was how many of the locals seemed complacent to the awesome spectacle of the mountain on their door step.  From a practical point of view, I can understand that we can’t sit and gawk at the mountain all the time.  We have to get on with life, work, and the activities that enrich our lives.  But I think this is precisely where we can err.  When we become complacent about the majesty around us, particularly the Majestic One Who is our life-giver, our savior, and our sustainer, then we have truly diminished the life He has called us to live and enjoy.  God knows we need to eat and drink and work together, but He also knows that abundant life begins in our relationship with Him.  (Matt 6:25-33, John 10:10)  To neglect spending time in His presence, to overlook the majesty of Who He is, to fail to recognize His hand at work in our lives, is to live a life far below what He has called us to.  At it’s least bad, this is to fail to receive the blessing God wants to give us.  At it’s worst, this is an affront to the living Lord.

I don’t know about you, but for me, I will make it my aim to glory in the majesty of the Lord God, to dwell in His presence, and to make much of Who He is and what He has done for us.

Be blessed today and bless the ones God brings into your life today.

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